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Frequently Asked Questions
The word granite comes from the Latin granum, a grain, in reference to the coarse-grained structure of such a crystalline rock. Granite is a common and widely occurring type of intrusive, felsic, igneous rock. Granites usually have a medium to coarse grained texture. Occasionally some individual crystals are larger than the groundmass in which case the texture is known as porphyritic. Granites can be pink to dark gray or even black, depending on their chemistry and mineralogy. Granites sometimes occur in circular depressions surrounded by a range of hills. Granite is nearly always massive, hard and tough, and therefore it has gained widespread use as a construction stone. The average density of granite is 2.75 g/cm3. Granite has been extensively used as a dimension stone and as flooring tiles in public and commercial buildings and monuments.
Marble is one of seven natural stones which have a massive demand in the world market. To the geologist, marble is a non-foliated, granular metamorphic rock that is formed by the metamorphism of limestone and dolostone. A number of minerals and gems can form in marble. Spinel from Vietnam, ruby and sapphire from Myanmar (formerly Burma) and lazulite from Afghanistan are just a few examples. Construction marble is a stone which is composed of calcite, dolomite or serpentine which is capable of taking a polish. With it’s varied range of colours, textures and veining, marble is the ideal decorative material for fireplace hearths and back panels, vanity tops, walls and floors. Marble can be cut and polished in many different ways; with the latest CNC machine technology almost anything is possible, from a simple polished ogee edge to a 3 dimensional motif carved in the face.
All surface finishes, whether they be timber, stainless steel or stone will range in costs. Regardless of its finish or shine, marble creates an immediate impression of elegance. Today, the presence of marble or other stone anywhere in a residential or commercial property is a plus on the real estate agents checklist. A marble foyer or bathroom makes a tangible contribution to the value of one’s property.
Keeping your stone free of dust and sand will minimize any scratches and wear-patterns that can develop from everyday use of some natural stone, such as marble and limestone. Sweep or dust all natural stone surfaces regularly to remove loose soil and dust. Clean your natural stone on a regular basis with warm water and a clean, non-abrasive cloth, sponge or mop.
In addition, using a pH neutral cleaner specially formulated for natural stone will help remove soils that normal dusting or damp mopping leave behind. A quality cleaner can be used at full strength or diluted depending on what level of cleaning is required. Do not use general purpose cleaners or you may damage your stone. Do not use products that contain lemon, vinegar, or other acids as these may etch the stone surface and damage the polish. Do not use scouring powders or creams; these products contain abrasives that may scratch the surface.
A sealer such is a penetrating impregnator, meaning the sealer is absorbed by the stone and sits below the surface of the stone. It therefore does not effect the surface, unlike lacquer treatment.
Natural stone has been formed over millions of years but improper care can ruin nature’s beauty. Although we usually think of stones as a hard material, it is a porous material that can absorb spills and stains if untreated. Sealing your stone with a quality impregnating sealer, will minimize the chance most spills from damaging your investment. However note that sealers are not a permanent means to preventing potential stains.
Most stains can be removed. Even oil stains can usually be removed using a poultice or paste that will draw out the oil from the stone.
Like any solid surface, high impact blows can harm granite. Because of its crystalline structure, it can chip if subjected to sharp hard objects. Unsealed, granite can absorb stains such as oil, which can ultimately cause dark spots or discoloration. Heat from pots and pans or burning liquids will not affect granite under normal circumstances.